Action on Vaquita
The tiny vaquita porpoise of the Gulf of California, Mexico, is the world's most endangered cetacean species. The International Committee for the Recovery of the Vaquita (CIRVA) has just released a report indicating that the vaquita's decline toward extinction has accelerated - there may now be fewer than 100 left. Click here to access the CIRVA report. The report calls upon the Government of Mexico to take immediate action to eliminate gillnets from the entire range of the vaquita and to accompany this measure with strong fisheries enforcement action. Click here for more information. The Marine Mammal Commission supported the participation of international experts in the meeting and continues to do all it can to assist Mexico in its efforts to ensure the survival of the vaquita.
Capitol Hill Briefing
The Marine Mammal Commission, in conjunction with the National Marine Fisheries Service, will hold a briefing at the Capitol Visitor Center, room SVC-212, on Capitol Hill in Washington, D.C., from 10:30 to noon on Thursday, September 25. The briefing will focus on increasing awareness of the impacts of sound on marine mammals and their environment, with an emphasis on shipping. Please RSVP at MMC_Admin@mmc.gov by September 20th if you plan to attend. We look forward to seeing you on Capitol Hill! Click here for an agenda of the briefing.
Alaska Native Consultation Meeting Summary Report Now Available
In December 2012, the Marine Mammal Commission and the Indigenous Peoples Council for Marine Mammals (IPCoMM) worked with NOAA's National Marine Fisheries Service, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, and the Environmental Law Institute to host a three-day meeting to discuss federal government-to-tribal government consultation in Alaska with a particular focus on consultation related to marine mammal resources and co-management. The purpose of this meeting was to improve the consultation process between federal agencies and Alaska Natives with the ultimate goal of strengthening the voice of Alaska Natives in matters that affect them, their communities, and their cultures. A summary of that meeting can be found here.
Follow the Commission
The Marine Mammal Commission is now on Twitter! Follow @MarineMammalCom to stay up to date on MMC news, activities, and events.
Marine Mammal Science and Conservation Priorities
The Marine Mammal Commission has completed its "Priorities Project" based on a review of the National Marine Fisheries Service's marine mammal science and conservation programs. The final report, available here, provides guidance for those involved in funding decisions to help identify the most pressing science and management needs for marine mammals.
2014 Annual Meeting
Brief summaries and PowerPoint presentations from the 2014 Annual Meeting of the Marine Mammal Commission are now available. Thanks again to all who participated in the various events.
Strategic Plan 2015-19
The Marine Mammal Commission's Strategic Plan for 2015-19 has been finalized and is posted on the Commission website. The Commission is grateful for the many comments received on the draft document posted in late 2013, which resulted in considerable revisions to the Strategic Plan. While this plan is formally intended for 2015-2019, the Commission is already using it to guide activities in 2014. For example, our 2014 Annual Meeting (May 6-8 in Washington, D.C.), will be guided by this Strategic Plan, as will current and future High Priority Projects, and funding priorities for the Commission.